Consumer and business spending in East Baton Rouge Parish rose by 1.8 percent in August, the seventh month in a row that activity outstripped 2013 figures.
Sales tax collection figures released Tuesday by the city-parish Finance Department show businesses and consumers spent $675.1 million in August. That compares with $663 million in spending in August 2013.
The figures do not include vehicle sales, which are generally examined separately when looking at spending as an economic indicator.
Spending, excluding vehicles, within the Baton Rouge city limits was up 7.8 percent in August to nearly $382.6 million. But spending outside the city limits of Baton Rouge was down 5.1 percent in August to $292.5 million. The numbers for sales tax collections inside and outside the city limits were affected by the city-parish’s recent annexations of much of the Mall of Louisiana.
Vehicle sales were up 1.5 percent from the year before, reaching nearly $63.9 million for the month.
Overall tax collections for the city-parish, which include vehicle sales, were up 1.8 percent in August to $14.8 million.
For the first eight months of the year, spending in the parish, excluding vehicle sales, ran 2.5 percent ahead of 2013’s pace to reach $5.4 billion.
Spending is up nearly 6 percent in the Baton Rouge city limits to $2.9 billion. The total is down 1.4 percent outside the city limits at $2.4 billion.
Tax collections through August, which includes vehicle sales, are up nearly 2.6 percent at $117.7 million.